PlayStation Studios ident

Sony unveils PlayStation Studios brand – which will also cover work-for-hire titles

Sony has unveiled a new identity for its first-party development teams: PlayStation Studios. The new name comes with a fancy new ident that will appear all over first-party titles, running in game, on trailers, as well as on boxes and in marketing materials.

However, unlike Microsoft’s equivalent, Sony’s brand will be extended beyond the classic definition of first-party titles. With a spokesperson telling gamesindustry.biz that third-party developers working under direction (work-for-hire projects basically) will also be awarded the branding:

“If our studios are managing the production of these games and working with an external developer, it will still come out under the PlayStation Studios brand… It doesn’t mean that we outright own the developer, but it just means we brought it up as a first-party. In a lot of cases we don’t own the developer.”

In retrospect the move was well overdue, with Sony’s various owned studios having no overarching identity beyond the clunky Sony Interactive Entertainment Worldwide Studios (SIE Worldwide Studios) moniker. Which was always a bizarre choice for a group that was so much more part of the PlayStation brand specifically than the Sony brand more generally.

The move follows a similar outburst of common sense over at Microsoft, who renamed its internal development arm as Xbox Game Studios at the start of 2019 – having previously spent time as Microsoft Studios, Microsoft Game Studios, and Microsoft Games in the past – although at least Microsoft naming made more sense with the studios also producing PC titles.

PlayStation Studios logoThe ident itself is highly familiar stuff, with the platform’s big hitters seen reflected in the classic symbols off the controller. It’s all very Marvel. Though the logo itself actually goes the other way and uses the classic PS logo. It looks a little disjoined to us honestly.

The announcement appears to have only been made through gamesindustry.biz, with no official blog post or press release going out concerning the move.

There Eric Lempel, senior vice president and head of global marketing at Sony Interactive Entertainment, also notes that the new brand won’t be ready in time for the two big summer exclusives: The Last of Us: Part II and Ghosts of Tsushima. Which seems a big missed opportunity to establish it – but with PS5 coming soon, there’s plenty of opportunity for that in the various demos and reveals surrounding the new console.

About Seth Barton

Seth Barton is the editor of MCV – which covers every aspect of the industry: development, publishing, marketing and much more. Before that Seth toiled in games retail at Electronics Boutique, studied film at university, published console and PC games for the BBC, and spent many years working in tech journalism. Living in South East London, he divides his little free time between board games, video games, beer and family. You can find him tweeting @sethbarton1.

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